If you are a Pigpen fan then I warn you: have a handkerchief ready when you listen to the Lovelight cuz the sound is not all it could be but ... but ... but ..
Jerry is so wacked or antsy on this show (what is the deal with that lame, lame Cryptical Outro??!?) that Pigpen plainly decides to take the helm. Listen to the fxcking organ, my friends! Skip to about 10:30
for a taste (the sound quality gets raspy there but bear with it ... no pun intended).
Beginning at 12:15, Pig induces Jerry into one of the sickest solos this side of Caution ... unless that's some "guest" guitarist that showed up on stage. Is it Jerry? Because Pig tries to bring him back at 13:30
and is completely IGNORED! Then at 13:29, suddenly: it's the Jerry we all know and love. Did he just snap out of his bad trip? Or was he taking a smoke break while Lord Felcher Pamphlet stepped in to take his place for a desperate minute?
No worries. By 15:00
we are back in uncharted territory. And then there's a tape cut. Who knows how long they were at it? At 16:00
Jerry, Bobby and Phil pretty much unplug themselves to solve the feedback problem!
BUT THE DRUMMERS AND PIG KEEP GOING!!
somebody yells, "Yeah, let's keep going!" and another guy yells, "What are you going to do Pigpen??"
So Pigpen does "his thing" and by 19:38
the entire band is back on the bus. At 20:00
Pig gets the European freaks (or their roadies) chanting "Right on! Right on! Right on!" along with the music.
"What's that you say?" "Right on! Right on! Right on!!"
After that the energy sort of goes downhill although the final chords are impressive.
Re the Dark Star: at the beginning, the sound quality is far superior to the Lovelight and the mix is very interesting. I almost wonder if Bobby is playing a borrowed instrument because the tone sounds nothing like his usual 1970 tone ... far more distorted. I don't think it's a recording artefact.
Phil is sort of absent until around 3:00
and then just rolls in as if he was there all along (he probably was). The levels get progressively weirder until the sound quality nearly disintegrates. Then around 5:00
a hum sets in. But stay with it! Because at 10:00
the percussionists are truly "exploring the space" (although I don't hear the wind chimes or xylophone as beautifully as in the McFarlin Auditorium later in December). After that ... it's okay but not your mama's perfume or anything or like that.
The Good Lovin' is relatively solid sound quality. There are some glitches in the China Cat but as you might expect from some of the other problems, Bobby's not mic'd loud enough for his solo during the segue.